Belfast Telegraph

Villas-Boas prioritising league win

Andre Villas-Boas has insisted reclaiming the Barclays Premier League should be Chelsea's priority this season - not winning the Champions League.

Villas-Boas this summer became the latest manager charged by Blues owner Roman Abramovich with delivering club football's biggest prize. But while the Champions League remains the Holy Grail for billionaire Russian Abramovich, Villas-Boas believes it needs to take a back seat - for now.

"The domestic title is always the priority," he said, describing the Champions League as much more of a lottery.

"We're there threatening to challenge. We're not that far away, but it depends so much on the draw, in the group phase and the knockout phases.

"There has been a pattern in the last four years, I know, but that luck is needed still in the Champions League.

"We can raise our level again, though, to be ready to compete in that competition and to get to that final."

If Abramovich's previous behaviour is anything to go by, Villas-Boas' job will ultimately depend upon him delivering the European Cup within his three-year contract. The young coach added: "In the end, you have to respond to owners' and clubs' expectations.

"I have my own sense of winning the most amount of titles as possible. That's the target for me. My players have that kind of ambition, too."

Domestic cup success has been enough to appease Abramovich in the past but it would not be sufficient for Villas-Boas, who said: "I wouldn't be satisfied if we don't win the Premier League.

He added, jokingly: "If I win all four trophies, I'll retire!"


From Belfast Telegraph